cup of coffee for my adhd son? Synaptol maybe? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 20 Old 06-02-2013, 06:31 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Anyone else tried it? 

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#2 of 20 Old 06-02-2013, 09:36 AM
 
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I have not used either with ds. I remember reading a thread about coffee. Seems like it was effective, but only for short periods of time. I do not know about the other item you mentioned.
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#3 of 20 Old 06-02-2013, 02:42 PM
 
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My husband found coffee useful for focusing on schoolwork starting at around age 15. I'm not sure how it works on children, but I have heard the rumors of it being helpful. Keeping it in mind for my children when they are school age, just in case.


tea6.gifcancer-beating wife to caffix.gif DH since 7/4/09, mother to REPlaySkateboard04HL.gifDS 5/1/11 + energy.gifDD 8/21/2013

 

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#4 of 20 Old 06-02-2013, 04:10 PM
 
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I find caffeine effective, but the problem is that it creates tolerance REALLY fast. It's only useful for a couple of days at most, and then you're stuck with it to avoid withdrawal effects. Keep in mind that caffeine is a stimulant drug, so don't think of it as some kind of non-medication option. It's generally not a good idea to combine it with other stimulant drugs, though it's usually okay in reasonable amounts.

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#5 of 20 Old 06-02-2013, 08:02 PM
 
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This was the thread I was thinking of http://www.mothering.com/community/t/1328007/adhd-and-coffee. Hope it helps.
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#6 of 20 Old 06-03-2013, 06:34 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the  replies and link. Ive given my sons half a cup of coffee for the last 3 days. They were neither extra hyper or extra calm/focussed....just the same in fact....good point about the tolerance factor...

 

i will be back...nak right now

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#7 of 20 Old 06-03-2013, 01:02 PM
 
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My oldest probably has ADHD.  

 

I started suggesting coffee for him in his mid teens to help him focus.  

 

I just asked him if it works - and he said yes.  He also adds that it can make him jittery.  

 

I will say that I have not noticed any difference in him when he drinks coffee.

 

The thing that seems to make the biggest difference in terms of getting stuff done in a timely fashion is sleep.  He does far better if she gets enough sleep.  


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#8 of 20 Old 06-11-2013, 12:09 PM
 
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I wouldn't touch Synaptol with a 10-foot-pole after reading about it online.  If the advertising council is after it for making false claims in its advertising, I'd have a hard time believing anything put out about it by the manufacturer is true at all.

 

Coffee is a stimulant and it really can be addictive so I don't think I'd necessarily think of it as a harmless alternative to stimulant meds. At my last office I had 2 work friends who were totally addicted to coffee/espresso and repeatedly tried to quit, and they had nasty withdrawl symptoms for ages!


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#9 of 20 Old 06-11-2013, 03:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks. Not sure how synaptol could be harmful if it is a truly homeopathic remedy. As for coffee, i do realize it is addictive and a drug, but lets face it, amphetamines, or caffeine for my son?  YKWM? How  is caffeine even comparable to the harder drugs prescribed for adhd by pediatricians.  

Im not sure if i mentioned it here or not, but if a child calms down with coffee, then s/he  is most likely has an adhd brain, compared to someones who gets hyped  up coffee. The harder drugs work the same way. 

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#10 of 20 Old 06-12-2013, 12:03 PM
 
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I have an issue with assuming that because something is "natural" or "homeopathic" means it's necessarily safe.  You can't even assume something's safe just because it's legal or non-regulated.  Anytime you take a substance hoping it will have an affect on your body, you're basically relying on chemicals in that substance--regardless of whether it's chemicals from a natural source or synthetic (and homeopathic remedies can be synthetic substances just like regulated drugs--they do not have to be "natural" to be considered homeopathic).  Even being "natural" does not mean it's safe--consider the case of Ephedra, which was based on an ancient Chinese homeopathic plant-based treatment--and which killed a good number of people before being banned.  (It was also a stimulant, FWIW--so probably worked for ADHD, too.)

 

Caffeine is a chemical, just one that's incredibly common and considered very safe in low doses.  But what sort of dose does one have to take to actually improve ADHD?  And how does one regulate that dose when the amount of caffeine in a given cup of coffee/espresso could change? Too much caffeine can be dangerous as well--people have died from fully legal caffeine-based energy drinks like 5 Hour Energy and Monster Energy.  Is it actually safer to self-medicate with stimulant caffeine given all the unknowns (dosage at any given time/safety of dosage for body weight vs. effectiveness/interactions with prescriptions etc) or to use a highly regulated stimulant drug under the supervision of a medical professional?  Is self-medicating as safe for a child who has problems with impulse control as it might be for an adult without impulse control problems?

 

You might still decide that coffee is the way to go, but I think it is dangerous to assume that it's necessarily "better" because you can buy it over the counter. There are more factors in play here than a simple 1-cup-of-coffee vs. 1-pill-of-Ritilin. 


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#11 of 20 Old 06-12-2013, 02:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I appreciate your response, but homeopathic isnt the same as natural. Homeopathy operates on certain principles. I am no expert on the subject, but my basic understanding is that it jumpstarts the body's own immune system to fix problems. If there is not problem, then it simply doesnt do anything, or if its the wrong remedy, it wont do anything in particular.

 

On the other hand, natural, is something quite different. Caffeine is natural, as is marijuana, as is heroin, as are other drugs, They are all natural, they are all drugs, some are more powerful or addictive than others.

 

Just wanted to clarify that point. I dont want to try and defend homeopathy or caffeine, i just want to know if others have tried it.

 

Personally, i drink a  small cup of coffee a day. Many adults do. Tea is also common, and also contains caffeine. However, not tmany people i know take amphetamines on a regular basis, and  i would not want to do that myself.  I guess  its obvious to me, and i dont want to discuss this further. Hard drugs versus caffeine, you know as well as i do that one is more  harmful than the other.

 

 

 

 

 

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Originally Posted by Aufilia View Post

I have an issue with assuming that because something is "natural" or "homeopathic" means it's necessarily safe.  

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#12 of 20 Old 06-12-2013, 02:40 PM - Thread Starter
 
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ps. you can buy caffeine in pills that would solve the 'regulate the dosage' issue.

 

Interesting about the homoepathic remedy that resulted in deaths. I wonder what the cause was? Perhaps it was contaminated with something

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#13 of 20 Old 06-12-2013, 03:11 PM
 
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Ephedra is not a homeopathic remedy.  It is an Chinese herb which is used as a stimulant.

 

Homeopathic remedies work under the principal that like cures like when administered in a small infinitesimal amount.  So, yes, poison's that would trigger vomiting like arsenic are used as homeopathic remedies to treat flu symptoms, for example, but, the reason that homeopathy is considered safe, yes, SAFE, is because the amount is diluted and shaken in water, so many times, that the original substance can no longer be measured.  So you can not die from a homeopathic remedy. 

 

But, it is believed, that it works because, if it is a "well selected remedy" in that it is similar enough to the symptom picture to effect a cure, that the energy of the original substance remains in the water to trigger your own bodies immune system and or healing response.  At the least, it does "nothing" as many people believe because "how can it"...."it is nothing but a sugar pill" or it does nothing because it was a poorly selected remedy.

 

There is a vast difference between herbal medicine, chinese medicine and homeopathy.  All three have a place in natural health and healing.  All three are elegant methods that stand on their own and cannot be confused with one another when you take the time to use them.  They are all three quite different!

 

As far as Contact Maya's original question about synaptol, I still think that you would be best served by finding a really good homeopath that will prescribe specific remedies.  I don't know any one that's used it but I do know someone who has used brightspark and thought it was helpful.

 

I'm with you as far as the difference between caffeine and a stimulant medication.  The NY Times has been replete with articles recently about the abuse of stimulant meds and adding to their abuse is the improper oversight of those on stimulant meds by their psychiatrist.  Abuse has become common on high school and college campuses. 

 

I forget, Contact Maya, are you doing the gaps diet by any chance?  If so, has that helped your children's symptoms at all.  I'm curious.
 

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#14 of 20 Old 06-12-2013, 03:25 PM
 
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Hmm, do not think immune system is going to change adhd with help of homeopathic.  Perhaps going for therapy would be a better route to changing behaviors without medication.  

 

Some thing to think about regarding coffee (which I am a connoisseur) is that not all sources have the same amount of caffeine.  In fact, there is a difference between light and dark roasts, espresso and drip, etc.  Some chain places search out more caffeinated beverages.   My dh has pointed out this study to me ... http://www.plosgenetics.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pgen.1002033   http://endeavors.unc.edu/caffeine_in_our_genes   

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#15 of 20 Old 06-12-2013, 04:46 PM
 
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That is if homeopathy just acts on the "immune system" to promote health.  Some would argue that the root of all disregulation or illness has an "emotional" component or trigger (homeopathy believes whole heartedly in the "mind body connection").  Regardless, just for the sake of clarity, homeopathy heals on the emotional, behavioral, and physical level...a well selected remedy will encompass and impact all these domains.  Some would argue as well, if you believe in a "spiritual" level of healing, believe it acts on that level as well.  This is why classical homeopaths take a full and complete history and do not treat for "symptoms" but a full picture, including an emotional and behavioral one which would cover a child with symptoms of ADHD. 

 

I speak from many years of experience working with homeopaths for the health and well being of my family.  While we haven't sought treatment for ADHD as no one as far as I know, in my family, struggles with this, we have used homeopathy to successfully treat the symptoms inherent in autism including inattention and impulsivity and my husband has used homeopathy to help him manage his diabetes.  Along with supplements, proper nutrition and great exercise, neither my husband or son have required pharmaceuticals up to now to treat their issues and I hope that they remain in good health and balance.

 

People in this country are educated by media and their doctors that allopathic medicine is the only legitimate way to health.  In many parts of Europe, India and Israel people use homeopathy routinely to the degree that there are hospitals and medically trained doctors who routinely use this healing method.  Homeopathy is over 200 years old and fell out of favor in this country but not because we are any healthier ;)
 

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#16 of 20 Old 06-13-2013, 08:28 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the clarification livinglife.

Both my sons are on GAPS. My 5yo is the one  that displayed adhd symptoms, and got me started with all of this.  Most of his worst behaviors went away with dietary intervention, especially with gluten elimination. My 7yo son, has auditory processing disorder.(APD) The school and the  district that provide services, do not recognize APD and lump it all into the category of ADHD. Apparently, you cannot rule out adhd, so it seems, that a diagnosis  is usually based on a teachers observations, this despite the fact that he does not have these symptoms on a home environment. Nonetheless,  i have started to look into different treatments for adhd, since there has been so  much pressure on me to do so. (they want him on drugs)

 

Funnily enough, my 5yo felt calmer with coffee, and wanted more of it after only 2 days.

 

My 7yo had no reaction whatsoever, and hates the stuff.

 

I dont want to give either of my children  any kind of drug,  including caffeine.  But i dont know that GAPS will cure APD, i have simply seen so little mention of it.

 

We saw a homeopath, and it helped my 5yo, but not so much my 7yo......

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#17 of 20 Old 06-14-2013, 07:34 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by contactmaya View Post

Thanks for the clarification livinglife.

Both my sons are on GAPS. My 5yo is the one  that displayed adhd symptoms, and got me started with all of this.  Most of his worst behaviors went away with dietary intervention, especially with gluten elimination. My 7yo son, has auditory processing disorder.(APD) The school and the  district that provide services, do not recognize APD and lump it all into the category of ADHD. Apparently, you cannot rule out adhd, so it seems, that a diagnosis  is usually based on a teachers observations, this despite the fact that he does not have these symptoms on a home environment. Nonetheless,  i have started to look into different treatments for adhd, since there has been so  much pressure on me to do so. (they want him on drugs)

 

Funnily enough, my 5yo felt calmer with coffee, and wanted more of it after only 2 days.

 

My 7yo had no reaction whatsoever, and hates the stuff.

 

I dont want to give either of my children  any kind of drug,  including caffeine.  But i dont know that GAPS will cure APD, i have simply seen so little mention of it.

 

We saw a homeopath, and it helped my 5yo, but not so much my 7yo......

Does you 7 year old have an IEP or 504?  There are several ways in which the school could work with your child's adp and do not require medication for adhd, but could me part of either IEP or 504, such as accommodations in placement, devices to help in the classroom, one on one instruction, etc.  Teachers are not qualified to dx or push medication. Although many pediatricians are willing to prescribe adhd meds on the request of parents because of pressure from school that does not mean the child has it.   I would be concerned about using any product or medication to attempt to treat a disorder that your child does not have.  A neuropsych exam done by a psychologist/psychiatrist/developmental ped. and evaluations from multiple adults working with your child including yourself should help clarify if your dc also has adhd, too.  Although some of the symptoms can look similar the cause and treatment are different.  There are also some different symptoms between the 2 that help identify the different dx.  

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#18 of 20 Old 06-15-2013, 07:49 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thankyou Melissa. My son has an IEP. The only way he could get OT was if he had adhd. Although the multi experted team pointed out several sensory disorder traits, they were ignored as far as obtaining an IEP was concerned. I was told in no uncertain terms, that only an adhd diagnosis would earn him the right to help.  He did have a diagnosis of apd by an audiologist at 5, but this was not considered adequate as he was not yet 7. I am in the process of obtaining yet another diagnosis.

 

Noone, not one soul, helped me as far as understanding APD. Not one expert, not one doctor, nor one bureaucrat. People had plenty to say, but no way of helping him.  I went to the doctor recently- i believe my son has apd, they are saying he has adhd at school. How can i rule out adhd or diagnose it definitively? 

Answer-you cannot rule out adhd.

 

His occupational therapist said the same thing.

 

 I actively pursued a diagnosis of adhd in order to get therapy.  Actually, the coffee thing was really to prove he didnt have adhd (not sure if that would be acceptable, but it makes sense)  In my last attempt with coffee, his behavior at school went  very hyper-proof he doesnt have adhd, he reacts to caffeine like someone WITHOUT it would.

 

I wonder what drugs would have been like on my poor kid?  I am the ONLY person standing in the way of drugging this child, just me and my computer right here.

 

How many others are in my position?

 

You mention test for adhd, do they definitively rule out adhd? The thing is, noone seems to agree on anything, so even if you say they do, or i find some test that would (i  have come across several tests), the doc will disagree with me.....

 

Its awefully circular isnt it?

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#19 of 20 Old 06-18-2013, 09:33 PM
 
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I think you are in a tough spot.  Since there is overlap in the services provided for adhd and adp, you need to stress getting the services and accommodations that work for adp.   An IEP should be individual goals specific to your child and not a general rule of thumb applied to all adhd kids.  There are parent advocates that can work with you to help in the IEP process.   Ask your team who your local parent advocate is.   You are part of your ds's IEP and you have to consent and sign off on the goals.  In our experience, ds's IEP team is willing to consider recommendations from his doctors; when they first set up his IEP, they followed all of the psychologist's recommendations based on ds's neuropsych exam.  This site has helpful information about learning disabilities, IEPs and can be utilized by doctors, too: http://ldnavigator.ncld.org/#/ld-defined/specific-learning/8 and http://www.ncld.org/types-learning-disabilities/adhd-related-issues/auditory-processing-disorders/auditory-processing-disorders-faq-questions-answered

 

An OT is not qualified to dx adhd.  Although pediatricians can, they are generally not a good resource, if their plan is medication alone.  Here is a list of professionals that dx and work with adhd and learning disabilities http://www.ldonline.org/article/6027/ 

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#20 of 20 Old 06-19-2013, 12:07 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I want to thank you so much for  all of your useful advice, and  information. I have another appointment with an APD specialist. I cant wait to get real help for my son.

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